Judge tosses $71M verdict against NBC Universal over ‘Columbo’ profits

A Los Angeles judge has set aside a $71-million jury verdict against NBC Universal over the disbursement of profits from the legendary crime TV drama “Columbo.”

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Richard Burdge Jr. granted the studio’s motion for a new trial, overturning a March finding in favor of the creators Richard Levinson and William Link.

The court ruled Monday that the jury should have been instructed on the meaning of certain key provisions that determined whether NBC Universal had the right to deduct distribution fees for the 1970s detective series.

The case is the latest win for media companies in so-called profit participation cases, where creators of shows or films claim a greater cut or rights to the spoils from a hit.

Read the source article at latimes.com

Oil trader IMMS sues Lebanon’s BankMed in NY for $1 billion

Oil trader IMMS has taken Lebanese bank BankMed to court in the U.S. state of New York, accusing it of failing to return $1 billion of its deposits when requested, according to court documents seen by Reuters.

IMMS Chief Executive Murtaza Lakhani, who trades European, Middle Eastern and Asian oil and oil products, said he would not comment beyond the case, filed with the Supreme Court of the State of New York on Nov. 22.

In a statement on Wednesday, BankMed responded: “The $1 billion deposit is a blocked deposit by instructions of IMMS maturing in about 2 years from now.”

It also said that it had discovered “material breaches of contract and attempts by IMMS to direct funds due to BankMed overseas” between October 30 and November 12, 2019, without providing further details.

“BankMed opposed such attempts by IMMS and took appropriate actions,” it said.

Read the source article at reuters.com

Wells Fargo, insurance company settle lawsuit over auto loan harms for $432 million

Wells Fargo and an insurance company it worked with have agreed to pay $432 million to settle a class-action lawsuit brought by customers who say they were charged premiums for auto insurance they did not need.

An internal report that found more than 800,000 people may have been charged premiums for the unnecessary insurance. The bank then initially acknowledged that as many as 570,000 customers may have been affected by the practice, and in some instances, it may have contributed to vehicle repossessions.

The auto lending controversy was one of a series of troubles the bank has faced since it was revealed in 2016 that bankers had opened millions of accounts without customer permission to meet high-pressure sales goals.

https://www.charlotteobserver.com/news/business/banking/article237666879.html

Read the source article at charlotteobserver.com

Big Perkins franchisee files Chapter 11

A franchisee of 27 Perkins Restaurant & Bakery locations filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Monday after losing the right to use the parent company’s name.

The franchisee, 5171 Campbells Land Co., based in Rankin, Pa., said in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania filing that it had assets of between $1 million and $10 million and liabilities in range of $10 million to $50 million.

According to local reports, 5171 Campbells operates restaurants in Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York. Earlier this month, a federal judge in Memphis, Tenn., granted franchisor Perkins & Marie Callender’s Inc. a restraining order that kept the franchisee from operating under the Perkins name and ordered it to stop using signs, flags, menus and anything else displaying any Perkins trademarks, and also to change the restaurants’ phone numbers.

Read the source article at Restaurant Business Magazine